Friday, January 23

Three At Bats: A Hit, A Walk, A Home Run

Howard Dean had a television trifecta tonight. Did okay at the debate - not astounding, but still solid - and did the Letterman Top Ten (Things I can do to turn things around) - dutifully delivering the writers' lines with a very decent response.

But on Primetime Live, he and his wife Judy met Diane Sawyer's insipid questioning head-on and were brilliant. Sawyer made her usual attempt to make her questions more newsworthy than her subjects' answers. The Deans were unapologetic - as they should have been - when Sawyer predictably drilled them on the Iowa speech:

Diane Sawyer: But it is the sort of thing that can hurt … really hurt you.

Howard Dean: You know what, Diane? It could. But there's nothing I can do about it. I did it. I own it. Maybe it was over the top. I was trying to pump up 3,500 kids who gave me three weeks of their lives, and I'm not a perfect person. But, my attitude is, that's done. And, now we gotta get back to running for president.
The young people are incredibly disillusioned. They see … the things that people care about the most who are under 30 are the deficit, the environment, and how to get through college. This President's wrecked the environment. We have the biggest deficit in the history of the country. What do they have to look forward to? They desperately want change and they're enormously energetic. That video shows it. Now look, I … I mean, was it over the top? Sure it was over the top. Do I do things that are a little nutty? Sure I do things that are a little nutty. But the truth is, I was having a great time. They were having a great time. It was really tough for those kids who worked their hearts out and come in third when they thought I was going to come in first. You know? I'm a little sheepish, Diane, but I'm not apologetic because I was giving everything to people who gave everything to me.
That's how I saw it from the get-go. People keep asking me if I'm still supporting this guy after the past few days. I put it this way:

The Democrats were simpering little wussies scared to death of offending Bush and the Crackheads. Dean knew he'd be labeled unpatriotic and unAmerican by the White House frauds if he stood up to them and identified them as the liars they were. He did - and as expected, they labeled him. But something amazing happened. They didn't stick. In fact, his words and attitude resonated with voters. It was only then that the other candidates came out of their shells and slammed Bush - using their newfound courage to slam Dean while they were at it.

If I have any doubts about Dean, it's from the way the media have been beating the crap out of him since he began to lead the polls. It's tough to win the race when it looks like that tortoises-and-hare Bugs Bunny cartoon.

Dean still impresses me as the real deal. I'm also impressed by Clark and Edwards. Kerry's past actions (war vote notwithstanding) still bother me, though I respect his accomplishments. Lieberman, Sharpton and Kucinich, on the other hand, are toast and should stop wasting debate airtime. We need to hear more from the other four.

Tonight's interview demonstrated why I'm still standing with Dean.

If you missed it, read it here or watch it here.